Some researchers have calculated that on a sponge we can found one billion of bacteria per cubic meter. They have also provided some practical tips to make cleaner the environment in which we cook
Hygiene is essential in the kitchen, and more or less we all know this. What many people do not know, however, is that the same objects we use to clean and sanitize can accumulate pathogenic bacteria.
Some researchers have provided some advice on how to use sponges and rags to the best and on the behaviors to avoid if we want to keep away from food infections. If the dishes and the kitchen are washed with dirty sponges, in fact, one of the biggest risks is the cross-contamination of hands-food-environment, which also affects the food we eat.
When it comes to bacteria, it is often difficult to realize the risks. In these cases, the microscope gives us a complete and rather disquieting picture: in the kitchen sponges there can be up to a billion bacteria per cubic centimeter. We never thought they could be so populated. And bacteria like peaceful coexistence: in very little space there are so many different species, from Moraxella (which give the bad smell to sinks and sponges) to enterobacteria, to the most dangerous bacteria such as salmonella, listeria, klebsiella and staphylococcus aureus. Dish towels, although in smaller numbers, can still host a wide range of germs. The most evident from the analysis are coliforms and staphylococci.
Practical advice. Given that in the kitchen, as in any other non-sterile environment, contact with microorganisms is inevitable, there are several ways to break down the bacterial load of sponges and dish towel:
Do not leave wet sponges on the bottom of the sink. After use, rinse them well and wring out as much as possible, then store them in a dry place; Disinfect sponges periodically. A good method is to leave them in boiling water for about five minutes; Even if we often sanitize them, it is better to replace the sponges with a good frequency; The same applies to dish towels:
after a couple of days it is better to wash them in the washing machine; Do not use dish towels to clean or dry shelves or burners; Do not use dish towels outside the kitchen.